NATURALLY-SWEETENED CANDIED LEMON PEELS (AND LEMON SIMPLE SYRUP)
- In a pot that fits the peels with extra room to spare, cover the peels with water from the tap and bring to a boil.
- Boil for about 3-5 minutes before draining the water. Return the peels to the pot and repeat.
- After the second boil, place the cooked peels in a bowl and set them aside.
- Pour the sugar or honey (or both) plus an additional 2 cups of water into the pot, stir briefly, and bring it to a boil. Stir and dissolve the sugar/honey into the water, then add the lemon peels.
- Bring the pot back to a low boil and cook for one hour until the water is thick and has been reduced to below the level of the lemon peels and the peels are translucent.
- Turn the heat off and let the peels cool completely in the pot with the liquid, and leave the top off.
- After the peels and cooking liquid have cooled completely, strain the peels, reserving the liquid in a separate container.
- Put a cooling rack over a cookie sheet or cutting board covered with wax paper or a nonstick pad. Distribute the lemon peels evenly across the rack and set aside in a cool, dry place to cool completely for about 24 hours, or dry for about 3 hours before pressing gently into a bowl of granulated sugar to coat.
- Once the peels are completely dry, or have been thoroughly coated with sugar, dip halfway in melted chocolate and place back on the drying rack until the chocolate hardens (optional).
- Store the lemon peels and simple syrup separately in airtight containers at room temperature for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Dark Chocolate melted, for dipping. optional Granulated Sugar, for garnish optional This recipe makes about 3 cups lemon peels and 1 cup (give or take) simple syrup. When using honey, it is normal that your lemon peels will not ever completely "dry". I dried mine for 24 hours, and they remain moist and sticky in spite of it. Don't get me wrong; they're delicious, but you will be more likely to need a napkin after eating them! Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart
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